“Prove that you are with us,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy informed the European Union on Tuesday, a day after Kyiv formally requested to hitch the bloc because it battles invading Russian forces.
EU lawmakers, many sporting #standwithUkraine T-shirts bearing the Ukrainian flag, others with blue-and-yellow scarves or ribbons, gave Zelenskiy a standing ovation as he addressed the European Parliament by way of video hyperlink.
“We are fighting to be equal members of Europe,” Zelenskiy stated in Ukrainian in a speech translated into English by an interpreter who spoke via tears.
“Do prove that you are with us. Do prove that you will not let us go. Do prove that you are indeed Europeans, and then life will win over death and light will win over darkness,” he stated. “The EU will be much stronger with us.”
Zelenskiy has remained in Kyiv to rally his individuals in opposition to the invasion. As he spoke to EU lawmakers and prime officers, a Russian armoured column was bearing down on Ukraine’s capital.
“We are (with you),” European Fee vice-president Maros Sefcovic stated in response to Zelenskiy’s enchantment, saying the EU would offer Ukraine with weapons, on prime of slapping unprecedented sanctions on Russia after it invaded Ukraine final week.
“And we will be with you to rebuild your beautiful country after your victory,” he stated.
Onerous To Be part of EU
The presidents of eight central and japanese European nations on Monday revealed an open letter calling for Ukraine to be granted speedy EU candidate standing and for the beginning of formal membership talks.
Ukraine is properly conscious, nevertheless, that any membership course of will probably be lengthy and troublesome, even when it manages after the conflict to keep away from falling again below Moscow’s domination.
Charles Michel, the chairman of EU leaders, informed the EU Parliament after Zelenskiy’s speech that the bloc must severely have a look at Ukraine’s “legitimate” request to hitch.
However he added: “It is going to be difficult, we know there are different views in Europe (about further enlargements).”
The European Parliament adopted a non-binding decision – by 637 votes to 13, with 26 abstentions – calling for harder sanctions “aimed at strategically weakening the Russian economy and industrial base, in particular the military-industrial complex”.
Whereas Russian President Vladimir Putin “recalls the most dreadful statements of 20th century dictators”, Zelenskiy is being “heroic”, they stated.
The European Parliament additionally urged EU leaders to be harder on oligarchs and officers near Putin, prohibit oil and fuel imports from Russia, ban Russia and its ally Belarus completely from the SWIFT financial institution messaging system, and to shut all EU ports to Russian ships or ships headed to or from Russia.
Nevertheless, EU lawmakers rejected an modification calling Russia a “rogue state”.
Russia calls its actions in Ukraine a “special military operation” geared toward ridding the nation of leaders it characterises as “neo-Nazis and drug addicts”.
European Fee president Ursula von der Leyen stated Putin’s choice to invade Ukraine had had the impact of uniting nations in opposition to Russia.
“If Putin was seeking to divide the European Union, to weaken NATO, and to break the international community, he has achieved exactly the opposite,” von der Leyen informed the EU Parliament, a blue and yellow ribbon pinned to her jacket.